Gloucestershire

Cheese-roller gargoyle created for Gloucester Cathedral

Gloucester Cathedral Image copyright Gloucester Cathedral
Image caption Pascal Mychalysin said the gargoyle was "loosely inspired by Germain Greer having a row"

A new gargoyle of a cheese-roller is to be installed at Gloucester Cathedral.

The 3ft (1m) tall grotesque figure is due to be placed high above the north side of the cathedral, as part of a £400,000 restoration scheme.

Master mason Pascal Mychalysin, who designed the "bonkers" cheese chaser, said it was "loosely inspired by Germain Greer having a row".

It will be joined by five other gargoyles including a rugby player, a jockey and a suffragette.

The six new stone gargoyles are being installed to protect one of the oldest parts of the building, by channelling rain water from the roof away from the side of the building.

Image copyright Gloucester Cathdral
Image caption The Gloucester statue is a rugby player, while another gargoyle pays tribute to the women of the Stroud mills

Mr Mychalysin said the project was at the "designing stage" and "not yet the totally finished article".

"We wanted something completely modern which had a meaning for people today, we didn't want to copy the past," he said.

"And the idea for the cheese-roller was something completely bonkers because cheese-rolling is bonkers."

The new gargoyles - only the second to be installed in "living history" according to the cathedral - have been designed to represent the county's six districts.

The cheese-chaser is the Tewkesbury gargoyle, marking the death-defying cheese-rolling races down Cooper's Hill.

A rugby player with a "broken nose and cauliflower ears" is the Gloucester statue, while Cheltenham is represented by a tearful jockey grasping the Gold Cup.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The new gargoyles are only the second to be installed in "living history" according to the cathedral
Image copyright Gloucester Cathedral
Image caption Once completed, the gargoyles will be installed high above the north side of the cathedral

The gargoyle inspired by suffragette Annie Kenney, pays tribute to the forgotten women of the Stroud mills.

"Gargoyles traditionally tend to be quite grotesque," said Sonia Bielaszewska, from the cathedral.

"But she's based on a real character and we didn't feel we could make her ugly so the water will be coming out of her megaphone instead of her mouth.

"But we're hoping they will be a true legacy and last for a couple of hundred years."

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